(L-R): Rosenstein, Sessions, McCabe. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

ABC News is reporting that Andrew McCabe, who was fired last week as the FBI’s deputy director days before he was set to retire, authorized a criminal investigation into Attorney General Jeff Sessions last year.

About the investigation: Per ABC, it was into whether Sessions “lacked candor when testifying before Congress about contacts with Russian operatives,” and top lawmakers from both parties were briefed on it by McCabe and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. A source close to Sessions told Axios that "he was not aware of this investigation at the time McCabe was fired."

The investigation was passed on to Robert Mueller "within weeks" when he was appointed Special Counsel, per ABC.

Sessions' lawyer, Chuck Cooper, told ABC: "The Special Counsel's office has informed me that after interviewing the attorney general and conducting additional investigation, the attorney general is not under investigation for false statements or perjury in his confirmation hearing testimony and related written submissions to Congress."

Worth noting: "It's unclear how actively federal authorities pursued the matter in the months before Sessions' interview with Mueller’s investigators. It's also unclear whether the special counsel may still be pursuing other matters related to Sessions and statements he has made to Congress — or others — since his confirmation," Levine writes.

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Updated 35 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4:15 p.m. ET: 32,381,243 — Total deaths: 985,104 — Total recoveries: 22,285,437Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4:15 p.m ET: 7,015,242 — Total deaths: 203,329 — Total recoveries: 2,710,183 — Total tests: 98,481,026Map.
  3. States: "We’re not closing anything going forward": Florida fully lifts COVID restaurant restrictions — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam tests positive for coronavirus.
  4. Health: Young people accounted for 20% of cases this summer.
  5. Business: Coronavirus has made airports happier places The expiration of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance looms.
  6. Education: Where bringing students back to school is most risky.
Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
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White House pushes to uphold TikTok ban

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The U.S. Department of Justice on Friday filed legal opposition to TikTok's request to delay a ban on downloading the app, with a judge expected to rule before the ban is set to go into effect Sunday.

Why it matters: The White House could have simply postponed the ban on its own for another week or two, as it did last Friday. This move suggests it's seeking to use the ban as leverage in ongoing negotiations.

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Substack and the future of media

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Axios Re:Cap digs in with Chris Best, CEO of Substack, which has more than 250,000 paying subscribers on its writer network.

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